Theodore M. Hesburgh Research Travel Grants (2015–2020)

Father Hesburgh

Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C. (1917–2015), was president of the University of Notre Dame from 1952 to 1987, a priest of the Congregation of Holy Cross, and an influential figure in higher education, the Catholic Church, and American public life. A noted public intellectual, he worked tirelessly on behalf of causes ranging from the Civil Rights Movement to the development of collegiate athletic programs to the mission of Catholic universities in the 20th century. Hesburgh’s unique perspective and contributions stand to enrich American social, religious, and political history, as well as ongoing discussions in public policy, philosophy of education, peace studies, and theology. 

The Archives of the University of Notre Dame house primary source material documenting Hesburgh’s life and work. To make these materials more readily available to scholars, between 2015 and 2020 the Cushwa Center offered Theodore M. Hesburgh Research Travel Grants supporting research projects that considered Father Hesburgh’s legacy.

Starting in 2020, researchers interested in studying these archival materials at Notre Dame should submit an application for one of the Cushwa Center's Research Travel GrantsA significant portion of materials pertaining to Father Hesburgh may be subject to a variety of restrictions. Before submitting an application for a Research Travel Grant, please contact the archives (; 574-631-6448) to confirm that the specific materials of interest to you would be accessible for research purposes.

Relevant Finding Aids

Interested researchers should explore the Notre Dame Archives webpage for the Hesburgh Papers, and the particular finding aids linked below, for collections and materials of interest. 

The following collections hold the majority of Hesburgh-related materials at the Archives:

Theodore M. Hesburgh Papers (presidential office files, papers, correspondence, printed material, etc.)
Department of Information Services Records (includes documentation of Hesburgh’s career at Notre Dame and beyond)
Michael O’Brien Interviews (audio interviews all relating to Hesburgh)
Notre Dame Magazine Records (includes many Hesburgh photographs)

Miscellaneous collections holding more occasional Hesburgh material (correspondence, speeches, etc.) include:

Christian Family Movement | Liturgical Arts Society Records | Michael A. Mathis Papers | Edmund A. Stephan Papers | Sorin Birthplace Commemoration Collection | Leo R. Ward Papers | Henry C. Wurzer Papers

Materials relate to subjects including but not limited to:

Humanitarianism and International Affairs | Cambodia Crisis Center | Council on Foreign Relations | ecology and environmentalism | International Atomic Energy Agency (1956–1977) | National Cambodia Crisis Committee | Overseas Development Council | Institute for World Order | nuclear energy and disarmament | Peace Corps | Rockefeller Foundation | science and technology | United States Advisory Commission for International Educational and Cultural Affairs | United Nations Conference on Science and Technology for Development | U.S.-Latin American relations | Vietnam War

Civil and Human Rights | immigration reform | peace studies | Presidential Clemency Board | Select Commission on Immigration and Refugee Policy | social justice | United States Commission on Civil Rights | women’s rights and education

Higher Education Administration | academic freedom | Carnegie Commission on the Future of Higher Education | Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching | Campus Protests and Student Activism | collegiate athletics | coeducation | College Retirement Equities Fund | Institute of International Education | Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics | lay trusteeship | Midwest Universities Research Association | National Science Board | student affairs | Saint Mary’s College (Notre Dame, IN) | Teachers' Insurance and Annuity Association of America

Catholicism and Catholic Intellectual Life | Catholic Action | Congregation of Holy Cross | ecumenism after Vatican II | International Federation of Catholic Universities | interreligious dialogue | Land O’Lakes Conference | Pontifical Council for Culture | Tantur Ecumenical Institute